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2012 December 12

Tarantino-ing Up The Town

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(NEW YORK) What should be made of the following: the newest Quentin Tarantino flick, Django Unchained, the opportunity to see said epic film a whole two weeks before the Christmas Day masses, the always-majestic locale of the Ziegfeld Theatre, and an exceptionally starry turnout, from cast to the massive mishmash out to celebrate? It's a recipe for a fairly riotous Tuesday eve.

Hosted by The Cinema Society, The Hollywood Reporter, and Samsung Galaxy, the screening kicked off with a smattering of director's remarks to end all remarks, thanks to Tarantino's fairly theatrical, hype man-esque bellow employing in intro-ing the film's cast. And what a cast he had to summon onstage: Samuel L. Jackson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jamie Foxx, and Christoph Waltz, for starters. Also in for the action on the carpet and in the theater, to name just a few: Uma Thurman (amassing enough adorbs shots with Tarantino throughout the night to craft a flipbook or something), Liv Tyler, Olivia Wilde, Zach Braff, Zoe Kravitz, Natasha Lyonne, Jason Biggs, and John Legend (who penned a few tunes for the film), Patti Smith, Cameron Diaz, 50 Cent, Q-Tip, plus a gaggle of mods including Naomi Campbell, Hilary Rhoda, Helena Christensen, Anja Rubik, Jessica Hart, and Lindsay Ellingson. 

Amid Tarantino's gregarious intro, there was a behind-the-scenes nugget attesting to the dynamic talent's heightened maturity factor over the years. "There was this problem with the lighting while working on this film, and there was a slight strobbing effect," Tarantino recounted. "Twenty, 15, even 10 years ago, I would've f*cking flipped out and had a f*cking attack on everyone. What I've learned since then is that is the film is good, it doesn't matter." Amen, QT. Although we can't quite endorse the statement that followed a short pause later: "I've calmed down by now." If that's what calmed down looks like...

Then, it was onto two hours and 45 minutes of simultaneously hilarious, shudderingly gory, and historically loaded engrossment on a level that basically demanded one clutch the hand of the neighboring moviegoer, clammy palms optional. Afterwards, the wave of attendees shuffled, a little awestruck, out of the Ziegfield, pouring onto the midtown streets past 11 p.m. Cars rolled up, others caught cabs (hey, Zac Efron, hobnobbing with Stephen Baldwin while strolling to Sixth Avenue in search of an on-duty ride, we're looking at you) and otherwise found means of journeying down to The Standard's Biergarten to party. (A film like that somewhat demanded a libation of some sort to chase with, be it DeLeón sippers highlighted that evening or something on the rocks.) A day later, we're still trying to get that eclectic and infectious soundtrack out of our minds, some of the bloodiest scenes wiped clean, and the urge to recommend it to friends, family, lovers, and strangers on the subway alike to a non-creepy minimum. 
ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV




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